Detail View

Choice, No Choice
Date: 1992-93
Culture: American
Dimensions: Overall: 5 ft. 4 in. x 8 ft. 5 3/4 in. x 5 in. (162.6 x 258.4 x 12.7 cm) frame: 5 ft. 5 1/4 in. x 8 ft. 7 1/4 in. x 4 1/2 in. (165.7 x 262.3 x 11.4 cm)
Medium: painted wood relief
Credit Line: Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Steven MacGowan in memory of their daughter, Samantha
Label Text: This work, made while his 8-year-old daughter battled brain cancer, responds to the feelings of the artist during those difficult months: “My family and some dear friends truly had no choice but to stop our lives and do whatever it would take to make Samantha better.” Originally despairingly titled No Choice to signifying the patients’ and parents’ experiences, MacGowan ultimately adopted the more hopeful Choice, No Choice title to acknowledge the many devoted caregivers along their 8-month journey. "The names of doctors and nurses who were very good to us, other children who touched us in the clinic, and even some medical slang grace this wall. The drawing of the bicycle under the bench was a drawing Samantha did in school. The get-well note was my expression of Hope. Samantha Ann MacGowan died on July 5, 1993; yet, in my heart and my art, she will always be very much alive."
Object Number: 1999.1
Currently on view